The United States’ Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) insufficient air pollution rules likely caused the death of 4.5 million veterans, a major study has concluded according to a Guardian report.
Scientists published their findings in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). The JAMA is a trusted, peer-reviewed medical journal that is published by the American Medical Association. 99% of illness-related deaths were linked to a particular kind of air pollution, they found. The researchers studied late veterans’ medical records and cross-verified them with the air pollution levels where they lived.
All the causes of death — lung cancer, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, dementia, cerebrovascular disease, chronic kidney disease, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and hypertension, were all pollution-related.
It's 2019. And yet STILL air pollution from fine particulate matter is killing people. While the situation is most dire in China, India, and other parts of Southeast Asia, the levels of pollution permitted by the EPA claim the lives of thousands every year https://t.co/vFrVR85hpj
— WIRED Science (@WIREDScience) November 20, 2019
The study also found that it “disproportionately” affected black Americans and those from socioeconomically disadvantaged communities.
The AMA finds "the burden of death associated with PM2.5 was disproportionally borne by black individuals and socioeconomically disadvantaged communities."
— Lindsay (@ShigetomiL) November 22, 2019
Over 100,000 Americans die each year from air pollution caused by vehicles, factories, and even farmlands, according to a report released earlier this year.
Under the Trump administration, the EPA is now preparing a proposal that would severely limit how science shapes public health. This proposal comes weeks after the EPA gutted an Obama-era rule limiting ‘incredibly dangerous’ coal ash.
The EPA also came under criticism for “exceeding” its goals in cutting back environmental regulations during Trump’s administration. Scientists are also claiming that “air pollution denial” in the U.S. is building up under the current administration.